Amazon has been pleasantly surprised that eBooks have taken off and now outsell hardback books. The company is now selling a new and improved Kindle that it claims is smaller, faster, lighter, and has 50% better contrast. In addition the new Kindle Wi-Fi only version will be priced at only $139.00. The anticipated release date for the new device is August 27, 2010 and is expected to be what the company CEO describes as a ‘mass-market device.’
In a recent Interview, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos also stated that:
Q: Amazon is selling more Kindle e-books than hardcover books. When will you pass paperbacks?
A: I predict we will surpass paperback sales sometime in the next nine to 12 months. Sometime after that, we’ll surpass the combination of paperback and hardcover. It stuns me. People forget that Kindle is only 33 months old.
Q: What accounts for that growth?
A: I think it’s a combination of the electronic ink display, which makes reading for long periods very comfortable. There’s the 3G wireless we built into Kindle so that you have that convenience of (being able to download) books in 60 seconds. And we have 600,000 titles in the Kindle bookstore, not counting the 1.8 million pre-1923, out-of-copyright titles that you can get for Kindle for free.
Q: Who do you think will buy the $139 Wi-Fi-only Kindle as opposed to the pricier model with 3G?
A: Evidence is starting to accumulate that this is a mass-market device. I predict that at the $139 price, people will buy multiple Kindles. We’ll have to wait and see. People might buy Wi-Fi-only models for the kids and 3G ones for themselves.
Q: Are you in the device business for the long haul?
A: This is our third generation of Kindle. I hope we’ll be sitting here talking about the 10th and the 20th generation of Kindle. We will also make our apps available on a wide variety of devices so people can read on LCD-based devices, tablet computers, smartphones, laptops. We have taken as a mission to have the best purpose-built reading device. We want to have the best Kindle bookstore.
I personally believe that at a lower price, the new Kindle is going to attract those who may have been put off by the previously higher price of Kindles. I know at $139.00 this is a very attractive price point. I will be buying one once they are released. My wife is an avid reader and this new Kindle will be perfect for her. I hope she doesn’t read this, but guess what she is getting for her birthday? LOL
What do you think?